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1
Dominion Articles / Self-Synergy
« on: November 14, 2017, 10:10:12 am »
 A Short Article on Self-Synergy

 
What is it?

For the purposes of this article, self-synergy can be any interaction of a card with a copy if itself.

What does it look like?

There's no limit here. It can be a workshop gaining a workshop. It can be a farmland trashing a farmland to gain a province. It can be a mandarin putting treasures on top of the deck so that you can buy another mandarin next turn. It can be repeated plays of an attack, perhaps by different players, that do more damage together.


Why is it important?

If there is one thing to take away from this article it is this: Self-synergy is important because it is always in the kingdom. At one time you could play Base Set Dominion and feel that the synergy between festival and library was important. Nowadays there are so many different Dominion cards that you might never play with festival and library in the same kingdom.

The consequence is that self-synergy should be very high on the list of things to learn when looking at new cards, no matter how exciting the synergy is between different cards.

The more complex concepts found in later expansions have self-synergy as an intrinsic part of the design, as seen with split piles, castles, and traveler cards. These cards require a lot of skill to play but a lot of that skill comes from an understanding of the self-synergy.

Combos

A number of well known combos, such as native village + bridge or ironworks + silk roads, are actually the combination of two strong self-synergies. If you can understand those self-synergies then you can start piecing together alternative combos in random kingdoms using different cards, tokens, and events.

Deck Building

This subject is really far too large to detail so here are a  few things to consider.

How good are the products of using a card on itself? (procession, upgrade)
Does the synergy increase greatly when you add many copies of a card to a deck ? (advisors)
Will adding more copies of a card reduce the effectiveness of each one? (chariot race)
Are completely new strategies created when you use enough copies of a card? (rebuild, horn of plenty)
Is the self-synergy strong enough to make the card a key pile that needs contesting? (minions)
Are there times when self-synergy vanishes entirely? (farmland)
Does self-synergy help some uses of a card and hinder others? (native village)
Can you interfere with an opponent's strategy by having copies of their key card? (wild hunt, lurker)

2
Dominion Articles / The Peasant-Teacher Line
« on: December 03, 2016, 09:05:01 am »
From Peasant to Teacher, a traveler's guide

The traveler cards are some of the highest skill cards in Dominion and certainly some of the most explosive too. They radically change a kingdom and open up many imaginative possibilities. This article looks in detail at the peasant line.

So what's the point of these travelers anyway? The big plan is to call the teacher, put tokens onto action piles, and use these improved action cards to win the game.

When don't they work? The peasant line will generally fail with decks full of treasure and junk where it takes a long time to play the teacher and any tokens will have little impact.

What can go wrong? The game can be lost by the time a teacher is called from the mat, the tokens can't be used well enough to change the game, or the actions tokens are great but there are not enough of these actions in the deck. This shows that a deck without good focus will be unable to use travelers well. So lets look first at the heart of it all, the teacher.

Teacher Teacher is a lot more cumbersome than its cousin, the champion. It needs a terminal action to play, it still doesn't do anything until called the following turn, and it needs to be played and called again to put down another token. This suggests the teacher needs to be played as early as possible in the game so it can have plenty of effect. Since it might not be called many times each token needs to be placed carefully. The first token placed is often used to boost drawing with either with the +1 card token or by improving a drawing card with the +1 action token. This is good for most action engines but it also draws the traveler cards and teacher more frequently. All tokens can be excellent however depending upon the deck and the kingdom. After one or two tokens are placed the teacher might become redundant and it is then fine to leave it on the mat or trash it for any benefit.

To get the most out of tokens, look ahead and decide which piles need tokens then prepare the deck with cards from those piles. This focus is often better than variety, especially if opponents are competing to collect the majority of these cards too. Looking ahead can also prevent running afoul of teacher's golden rule teacher can't put a second token on a pile. Plans and ferries can get in the way. Use training and lost arts after calling the teacher to get a second token on a key pile.

Disciple Disciples are not just a stepping stone towards the teacher. They are also the perfect way to both maximize the benefit from placed tokens and collect more cards from piles with tokens. Disciples can also help compete against opponents to claim a majority of cards in a pile. A well focused deck with good drawing will allow the disciple to be played on the best actions. Cards gained with disciples have the potential be drawn and played the same turn, helping a slow starting peasant-teacher strategy to accelerate very quickly.

Fugitive Fugitives are generally just a stepping stone towards the disciples and offer little unique capability. With fugitives, and all other travelers, it is important to time the shuffling of the deck carefully so that the travelers spend as little time as possible in the discard pile (and draw deck).
Example With fugitive and laboratory in hand and 3 cards in the draw deck you should generally play the fugitive and not play the laboratory. The fugitive can then be exchanged for a disciple and immediately shuffled into the next draw deck.

Soldier At the start of the game soldiers are a rather transitory card. The income is moderate, the attack is mediocre, and they consume a valuable action when played. In the end game however they can change into an amazing income card. Once teacher tokens are on an attack pile it is sometimes possible to fill the deck with those attacks (helped by disciples), draw big hands using the token abilities, and then play soldiers for big income.

Peasant At first it seems as if peasants are only a problem. They certainly seem to offer little at the start of the game when they hold up deck development just to get this traveler line started. Their redeeming feature is the +buy and this can be absolutely vital to engine decks that might want to buy in more travelers (peasants), cards from token piles, and green cards in the endgame. It can be easy to overlook their long term value. Tokens can be placed on the peasant pile and they will affect peasants only and not the travelers.

Building the deck
In most cases, buy a peasant in the first two turns and exchange it through to become the only teacher as soon as possible. This is usually aided by actions that will trash, draw, or cycle through the deck (the teacher might arrive late if there are no such actions in the kingdom). Disciples are a perfect card to use with token piles so often a second peasant can be bought early to become a permanent disciple. Further disciples, soldiers, and peasants should be put into the deck for a specific purpose as they will often arrive too late to be a general asset. Don't keep buying peasants just because they are cheap.

While doing all that the deck needs to be functional, probably a functional engine. It is still important to use strong attacks, defenses, trashing, and so on. Victory points can usually wait until after the teacher has been called. The deck will also need cards from the key piles (the piles which will get tokens). The deck will get immediate benefit if it has a number of these cards when the teacher is called. Ideally the first disciple can gain a key card before it is exchanged to be the teacher. There are exceptions to this, typically when the deck is enabled by placing a +1 action token and without that token the deck will be a mess of terminals. It is always worth remembering that the teacher needs an action to play as well.

If the key cards cost 5 or more then the first peasant will probably not provide enough income to buy one. The first soldier has a better chance but it will only be played once before it gets exchanged so special attention needs to be paid to income from individual hands, not just overall income.

Consolidation
There may not be many turns between the teacher being called and the end of game. This means the deck needs to be brought under control rapidly, usually by drawing the deck and then getting maximum advantage from every action. More key cards can be added to the deck quickly for extra growth using disciples. After deck control comes kingdom control. Play strong attacks repeatedly. Collect a majority of the key cards. Prepare for the endgame with powerful point scoring and secure control of any 3 pile ending. Easy!

Opposition
Opponents will be competing for important cards such as the traveler upgrades and the key action piles. This can  severely restrict some strategies in multiplayer games and games where traveler upgrades can be trashed out (there are only 5 of each upgrade).  Competition for action cards can bring about early 3 pile endings. Attacks on decks can be more severe in multiplayer and this can add a lot more risk to a traveler strategy, particularly when travelers can get trashed.

3
Goko Dominion Online / Fun Goko bug
« on: May 11, 2016, 12:55:09 pm »
I was playing a game against the bots yesterday and after they obviously didn't like the fact that I was winning. After buying three colonies, all my cards remained in play at the end of the turn leaving me a draw deck of just those 3 colonies! All my other cards were lined up in the middle. The bots kept playing their cards on top as if nothing had happened.

4
Adventures Previews / Preview: Giant
« on: April 03, 2015, 12:54:29 pm »


Giant: Action - Attack, $5
Turn your Journey token over (it starts face up). If it's face down, +$1. If it's face up, +$5, and each other player reveals the top card of his deck, trashes it if it costs from $3 to $6, and otherwise discards it and gains a Curse.


Wow a big card! +5 coins and attack is very impressive even if you don't get it every time. This guy is certainly going to bring triumph and disaster. It will feel like a disaster if you play your giant for +1 coin, flip your journey token, but it gets trashed from your deck before you can play it again. You'll have to buy another one won't you, or maybe you should have bought a second giant already?

How bad is the attack? It would be trouble except that the giant is so slow. Unless your opponents can play a lot of giants you might be able to ignore it. When you have more than one opponent you might get more attacks on your deck and then you might need to worry. 

Traders, beggars, and silver in general look like good defenses against a giant. The defender will generally have some control of what the attack will do since it is the defender that puts most of the cards into the deck. If you buy a lot of fool's gold then the giant will be giving you curses. Even so the giant attack will probably be quite random since, like a jester, it only looks at one card. We'll see streaks of luck where the same sort of card is turned over again and again.

How good is the coin income? If you can use those +5 coins to buy key cards like platinum then it is excellent. Of course, having to get +1 coin first is very bad but perhaps you can use those early turns to gain some cards with +buy, ready for when the giant gives you the real money. Maybe if you can play your giants very often you can forget the bad start and look towards a healthy income of +6 coins from two plays.

I suspect there will be some interesting end game decisions on whether or not to play the giant and flip the journey token, especially if there's another action that could be played instead. I also suspect that these decisions will feel bad every time as you'll be weighing up income in the current hand against a gamble on what you need in a future hand. Triumph or disaster will be waiting.

5
Dominion Articles / End Game Example
« on: February 06, 2015, 05:56:51 pm »
Many people have asked for articles about end game play so I'm going to use a recent league game against Stef for a discussion of some end game principles. You can only win a Dominion game through empty piles: either the province pile or three other piles. A lead at any other time may not be decisive. If you need to take more than one turn to empty piles then the opponents will always have a chance in the intervening turn to score and win. It becomes easier to for them to win if you haven't scored enough points but have lowered the piles.

In this example game, Stef and I are involved in a competitive endgame with strong decks. We are both looking for a way to close out the game in one turn or score points and deny the opponent a chance to win on the following turn. The kingdom is as follows.


Code: [Select]
Loan, Familiar, Bishop, Remake, Silk Road, Bazaar, Council Room, Ghost Ship, Mystic, Torturer
This is quite a complicated kingdom anyway and it could certainly have been played differently in the early game. Let's skip that though and jump to the endgame at turn 18, with Stef going first but 6 vp behind.

Stef's deck - 6 bazaars, 3 council rooms, ghost ship, 5 mystics, remake, bishop, 2 silver, 2 provinces, duchy, 2 curses, 1 vp chip.
DG's deck - 4 bazaars, 2 council rooms, ghost ship, 2 mystics, remake, 2 bishops, familiar, silver, province, silk road, 14 vp chips.
Relevant Supply piles - 4 provinces, 7 duchies, 8 estates, 0 bazaars (empty), 5 council rooms, 3 mystics, 8 ghost ships, 7 bishops, 3 remakes, 3 curses.

Both decks draw quite reliably despite the attack from the ghost ship. In the game Stef was able to draw the entire deck with 3 actions remaining, 4 buys, 16 coins, and a hand of bazaar, 2 mystics, remake, bishop, 2 silver, 2 provinces, duchy, 2 curses. Question number one, is it possible to win on that turn? Well, I'll give the answer later. In the game Stef played the remake on a silver and a curse gaining a bishop, drew the bishop with the bazaar, and played the two bishops on the last curse and the duchy. This left him 3 points behind with 4 buys and 19 coins. Question number two, is what would you buy there? Again, we can discuss that later.

After cleaning up his deck with the card play, Stef bought one province for a 3 point lead and two torturers for extra control. Moving onto my turn,  I was able to draw the entire deck with 2 actions remaining, 3 buys, 8 coins, and a hand of bazaar, ghost ship, remake, bishop, bishop, familiar, silver, province, silk road. Question number three, is it possible to end the game on that turn?

In fact, that is the final question as I did manage to end the game there. It was possible to  remake the silk road into a mystic and the silver into a remake, draw those cards with the bazaar and familiar, and then remake the two bishops into mystics. This empties the mystic pile so buying a province and the last two curses ends the game for a 2 vp win.

Now lets go back and look at question two. My final winning score was only two points so should Stef have bought another province for a bigger lead? It's not quite as simple as that. On my final turn it was also possible to remake the silk road into a mystic and the ghost ship into a gold, draw them with the familiar and bazaar, and play them and a bishop for 16 coins to buy two provinces. Although Stef did need to buy more vp that turn, he needed to leave those three provinces in the supply and get vp from duchies.

Now lets return to question one. Was it possible for Stef to win on his turn? Yes it was possible to remake both silvers into remakes, draw them with a bazaar and mystic, then remake the remake and bishop into two more mystics, use the final mystic in hand to draw one mystic that then can draw the other. Play the final mystic to give 20 coins. This is enough to buy the final mystic, the final remake, a province, and an estate, for a 1 vp win.

6
Dominion Articles / Buys and Gains
« on: August 25, 2014, 09:25:58 am »
General Principles

Without either gains or extra buys a deck is likely to be quite one paced and will take a number of turns to buy cards for income then more turns to buy cards for victory points. This is seen most clearly with alternate (kingdom) victory point cards since it takes far too many turns to buy the vicory cards and also buy any other cards needed to boost their scores.

Trashing cards like copper out of a deck takes time and can be a waste of time if good cards cannot be put into the deck quickly enough to replace them, usually with buys and gains. The faster that you can put cards into your deck with +buys and gains, the more turns you can spend trashing down to a controlled deck beforehand. The reverse can also be true: the more compact your deck becomes, the more often you will be able to play cards for buys and gains (although you still need income to make use of those buys).

Buys and gains obviously accumulate many cards and suit big deck strategies for kingoms cards like philosopher's stone. Some curse ridden decks will never be repaired and will be improved by accumulating basic treasures such as silver and sometimes even coppers. Action based becks (engines) usually need to accumulate many action cards in order to function. Many key cards in a kingom, such as fool's gold, might work better in large quanitites and it is important to accumulate them faster than your opponents. Buys and gains can deliver the quantity of key cards and can often deliver them rapidly, however time spent preparing the buys and gains could be time spent buying the key cards. This can be particularly important in multiplayer games or when using expensive actions such altar or university.

End Game


There may be no point taking many turns to slowly build a strong deck if you cannot earn a high reward. If an opponent gains a early lead it might be hard to overtake them just buying one vp card per turn. Buys and gains allow you to take more turns to build a strong deck on the assumption that it will be able to score more heavily with more victory cards in later turns. This can certainly be worthwhile if a deck can greatly improve each turn before greening or risks drawing badly as soon as victory cards are addded.

With extra buys you can earn the capability to end the game early by emptying 3 piles when you are ahead. Throne room, procession, and king's court can be strong in these situations too if they can conjure extra buys or gains. It can be difficult to force a three pile ending if you can only buy one card each turn, assuming the opponents don't make it easy for you. This leads onto the topic of defensive play.

The simplest vp purchasing strategy is to buy the highest victory card available on your turn. Another strategy however is to score vp while denying your opponent the chance to win on their next turn. Since the game only ends when the province pile or three piles are empty, you simply leave enough cards in the piles so that so your opponent is unable to empty them (and win) next turn. The most well known example of this is the penultimate province rule (PPR), which relies on the opponent being unable to win until the penultimate province is bought, but as soon as they do that they offer you a chance to win with the last province providing the scores are close. If you have extra buys and gains available you are in a better position to purchase vp defensively, such as buying two duchies instead of the penultimate province or perhaps switching to alternate vp if it is in the kingdom.

Furthermore, if you can buy or gain extra vp cards on your turn it is more difficult for an opponent to play defensively since you can potentially score more on your turn. Similarly if you have many buys and gains it becomes more difficult for opponents to prevent you from emptying piles. Expert players will often try to control the endgame by having more buys and gains than their opponents, and often create situations where they can end the game but opponents cannot. 

Buys

In principle, buys are much more simple to use than gains even though they can require decision making during play on how to spend the coins. Generally you want extra buys with large income hands. As soon as +buys are in your deck each coin generated is more likely to be useful. It isn't wasteful to have +buys when you don't need them as long as you have  enough buys when you do need them. That's all obvious but it is easy to lose sight of income when crafting a fancy deck. It's also possible to push too hard for income in the early game and belatedly spend a lot of coins for a cheap +buy card in the late game.

For very high income hands, +buys can make sure that all income can be used. A bank is a prime example of card that is best used with +buys, otherwise any extra income it provides above a gold might go to waste. More generally +buys offer the choice to buy multiple cheap cards rather than one expensive card. One expensive treasure is usually better than two cheaper basic treasures, so this more often applies to victory cards, action cards, and key kingdom cards. If kingdom cards are cheap and at different costs then there will me more choice how to use +buys. Extra buys also offer flexibility when dealing with potion cost cards and hands that miss key price points, such as 7 coin hands. A large income hand with a potion often needs a buy for the potion cost card and a buy for the remaining coins.

When you are wanting to build a deck through high spending and extra buys it can be important to keep a focus on income cards. Dominion already needs judgement on the value of a trashing, gaining, or attacks compared to income cards. When a deck has +buys, each coin is more likely to be useful and should be valued slightly more.

Buys naturally support the accumulation of action cards to build an engine deck. Extra buys suit some unique kingdom cards that benefit from buying coppers and curses but I won't discuss them much here. Cards like goons, counting house, gardens, and trader all have their own play style that does not fit any general advice. Black Market has many unique tricks as well. Cost reducers such as bridge, highway, quarry, and peddlers work very well with extra buys and the more that you can combine these reducers with +buys the better the results, even producing 'megaturns' when enough are put together. Coin tokens and +buys both provide flexibility on how coins are spent and it may depend on the kingdom whether they do much more together than either would do alone. Extra buys do however allow the hoarding of coin tokens for big spending turns later in the game.

Most importantly, all the benefits from buys do not come in isolation. For example you might be able to build a deck quite strongly before deciding to pursue a gardens strategy, buying multiple gardens in one turn, adding coppers to boost the scoring, and using buys to force a three pile ending. For an engine builder, not only do extra buys allow more engine components to be added each turn but they can allow an engine to deliver bigger vp turns at the end. This means an engine can be built up over more turns with more resilience, power, and a great deal of end game control.

7
Goko Dominion Online / Goko connection problem from Firefox
« on: May 14, 2014, 09:35:04 am »
Anyone else getting this?

You have asked Firefox to connect securely to www.playdominion.com, but we can't confirm that your connection is secure.

Normally, when you try to connect securely, sites will present trusted identification to prove that you are going to the right place. However, this site's identity can't be verified.

www.playdominion.com uses an invalid security certificate. The certificate is only valid for the following names: ssl2322.cloudflare.com , *.branaganmeats.com , *.michigan-auto-attorney.com , birminghamdiocese.org.uk , *.birminghamdiocese.org.uk , *.guidedelearning.com , cedarbrooksauna.com , *.thechoice.my , pr2hub.com , santamoneyca.com , *.celsiusapp.com , dancing-bear-tours.com , *.makingfun.co , makingfun.co , *.myinternetmarketingpartner.com , guidedelearning.com , ryanpatricks.com , topbargains.com.au , *.cedarbrooksauna.com , *.dancing-bear-tours.com , *.futurism.io , futurism.io , *.pr2hub.com , celsiusapp.com , *.topbargains.com.au , thechoice.my , tsgpix.com , *.sendwonga.com , sendwonga.com , equestria-2d.com , pixelplant.com , michigan-auto-attorney.com , *.equestria-2d.com , *.pixelplant.com , *.ryanpatricks.com , *.tsgpix.com , myinternetmarketingpartner.com , *.santamoneyca.com , *.sport1xbet.com , sport1xbet.com , branaganmeats.com (Error code: ssl_error_bad_cert_domain)

8
We've got all the expansions out. We've had plenty of time to play with them. What do we think is the best designed Dominion card?

This doesn't have to be the most powerful. It can be the most elegant. The most fun. The most ingenious. The simplest. The most game changing. Anyone can bring their own ideas to the debate. Just to provoke some ideas, I'll suggest that farmland is a well designed card. Absolutely fit for purpose, simple to play, a unique effect, but perhaps not exciting enough for most people's tastes.

No variants please. Most people don't know the variants.

9
Dominion General Discussion / Interesting random kingdom
« on: June 18, 2013, 08:03:35 am »
Goko threw up this interesting kingdom for me. It's worth thinking about.

Stonemason
University
Great Hall
Scheme
Gardens
Procession
Spice Merchant
Hunting Party
Expand
Forge

10
Simulation / Problem about AI problems
« on: June 13, 2013, 08:14:08 am »
Here's a open ended quiz for everyone who thinks that Dominion AI isn't that difficult. Let's look at a kingdom of chapel, menagerie, woodcutter, scheme, bridge, ironworks, quarry, worker's village, jester, hoard. What potential problems would an AI find in playing/analyzing this kingdom?

You can reveal any problem an AI might find even if does not apply to all AIs. It can apply to card play rules, purchasing rules, creating candidate AIs, testing potential AIs against each other, etc.

11
Goko Dominion Online / Bots and alchemy
« on: February 28, 2013, 09:34:05 am »
So has alchemy been released for sale already? I do wonder why Goko ask for beta testers since the faults we report are generally ignored and they release the software for purchase anyway. We don't know if our reports are addressed or not since we are not told of anything. The last time I said the beta was amateurish a senoir Goko person asked me to send my opinions to them, so I did. Five months on the beta is still amateurish although it presumably has now come to an end.

So for alchemy, the bots are clueless when using potions as an alternate currency and horribly overbuy them. It means they are almost certain to lose kingdoms with potion cost cards unless they are lucky and use apothecaries/alchemists to sweep up the potions. Anyone who pays money for alchemy might want want to check if sages and saboteurs still pick our vineyards, whether the scheme/alchemist/herbalist process is correct yet, and whether the speed of the possession interface is problematic.

12
Dominion Articles / Better than nothing?
« on: February 06, 2013, 08:34:07 am »
This article is about the hidden costs of cheap cards that are often bought since they appear to be 'better than nothing'. This would typically be a 2 cost card that seems harmless but contributes little to the overall design of the deck. Cards that fit into this category could be  pawn, pearl diver, haven, hamlet, and vagrant, but the principles could also apply to  cellar, crossroads, apothecary, spy, wishing well, great hall, sage, scheme, oasis, or all villages. These cards look harmless enough since you can seemingly always play them to get a replacement card and action. Whatever benefit the card gives it seems better than nothing. Let's look at some situations where you need to think twice.

Terminal Draw


This is the simplest case that people can recognize. Action cards have no value at all when drawn into hand with no actions left to play them.

Top of Deck Attacks

Attacks by a sea hag, fortune teller, or rabble do more damage when an opponent draws the bad card into hand on the following turn. There is a line thought that if the bad card is unavoidable it might as well come now rather than later but generally this reasoning is false. In Dominion you want to play your good cards as soon as you can for incremental benefit.

Some cards naturally defend against top of deck attacks, such as golem, scavenger, chancellor, venture, and adventurer. Drawing from the top of the deck before playing those cards will forfeit that defense.

Reactions

Whilst you may be able to play your cheap action for +1 card during your turn, during any opponent's turn it occupies space in your hand and deck. This means that your reaction cards are slightly less likely to be in hand and revealed. This not only applies to your moats, fool's gold and tunnels but also provinces (vs tournaments), young witch banes, and curses (vs mountebanks).

Discards

Whenever have to choose cards to discard from a hand including your cheap card,  this decision comes before you can play it for +1 card. It is again occupying space in your deck. You must often choose between discarding a card you know or the cheap card that will draw an unknown from the top of the deck. The loss of information leads to poor decisions. This becomes worse when the decisions become more pivotal such as a militia attack on a hand of {trading post, pearl diver, curse, silver, silver}: Keep the bad cards for trashing or keep the treasures for spending? The lack of information can also leave you gambling on card combinations such as baron with estate.

Discards can often be forced by your opponent with militia type attacks but it can also come from your own cards such as warehouse, storeroom, and embassy. When a navigator or cartographer reveals a cheap card from the top of your deck, a later card in the deck has been obscured. The same is true with apothecary and scout however the cheap card may also have prevented you drawing a later card into hand. (On the other hand, small drawing cards can  provide great benefit when played after a cartographer, apothecary, or scout).

Unique card effects

2 cost cards are vulnerable to being swindled into estates and that might be a consideration. Golems and hunting parties will find your cheap action cards, for good or bad. Adding extra action cards to your deck is likely to change the results from tributes and ironmongers. 

How much does all this matter?

These subtleties can often be ignored whenever you are buying a card for a good purpose. Cheap cards can often provide great value. Even minor value can outweigh some of marginal risks discussed here. Thinking through some of these concepts can often also highlight benefits instead of risks. However it is possible for weaknesses in your deck to be exposed turn after turn and that's when you need to be aware of the risks. Then you need the foresight to buy nothing instead of a card that you don't really need.

13
Goko Dominion Online / Surprisingly good Goko bot play!
« on: January 07, 2013, 09:22:37 am »
It probably fell into this strategy slightly by accident but the bot gave a very good impression of knowing what it was doing!

------------ Game Setup ------------
Supply cards: Cellar, Chancellor, Village, Bureaucrat, Gardens, Moneylender, Remodel, Spy, Laboratory, Market, Copper, Silver, Gold, Estate, Duchy, Province, Curse
 
---------- Village Idiot Bot II: turn 1 ----------
Village Idiot Bot II - plays 4 Copper
Village Idiot Bot II - buys Moneylender
Village Idiot Bot II - gains Moneylender
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Copper, Copper, Estate, Estate, Copper
 
---------- Village Idiot Bot II: turn 2 ----------
Village Idiot Bot II - plays 3 Copper
Village Idiot Bot II - buys Silver
Village Idiot Bot II - gains Silver
Village Idiot Bot II - shuffles deck
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Estate, Copper, Moneylender, Copper, Estate
 
---------- Village Idiot Bot II: turn 3 ----------
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Moneylender
Village Idiot Bot II - trashes Copper
Village Idiot Bot II - plays 1 Copper
Village Idiot Bot II - buys Remodel
Village Idiot Bot II - gains Remodel
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Silver, Estate, Copper, Copper, Copper
 
---------- Village Idiot Bot II: turn 4 ----------
Village Idiot Bot II - plays 3 Copper, 1 Silver
Village Idiot Bot II - buys Laboratory
Village Idiot Bot II - gains Laboratory
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Copper, Copper
Village Idiot Bot II - shuffles deck
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Copper, Remodel, Estate

---------- Village Idiot Bot II: turn 5 ----------
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Remodel
Village Idiot Bot II - trashes Estate
Village Idiot Bot II - gains Village
Village Idiot Bot II - plays 3 Copper
Village Idiot Bot II - buys Silver
Village Idiot Bot II - gains Silver
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Silver, Estate, Laboratory, Moneylender, Estate
 
---------- Village Idiot Bot II: turn 6 ----------
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Laboratory
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Copper, Copper
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Moneylender
Village Idiot Bot II - trashes Copper
Village Idiot Bot II - plays 1 Silver, 1 Copper
Village Idiot Bot II - buys Gold
Village Idiot Bot II - gains Gold
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Copper
Village Idiot Bot II - shuffles deck
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Estate, Copper, Laboratory, Village
 
---------- Village Idiot Bot II: turn 7 ----------
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Village
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Estate
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Laboratory
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Gold, Remodel
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Remodel
Village Idiot Bot II - trashes Estate
Village Idiot Bot II - gains Remodel
Village Idiot Bot II - plays 2 Copper, 1 Gold
Village Idiot Bot II - buys Laboratory
Village Idiot Bot II - gains Laboratory
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Moneylender, Silver, Silver, Copper, Copper
 
---------- Village Idiot Bot II: turn 8 ----------
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Moneylender
Village Idiot Bot II - trashes Copper
Village Idiot Bot II - plays 2 Silver, 1 Copper
Village Idiot Bot II - buys Province
Village Idiot Bot II - gains Province
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Copper
Village Idiot Bot II - shuffles deck
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Remodel, Silver, Laboratory, Silver
 
---------- Village Idiot Bot II: turn 9 ----------
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Laboratory
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Moneylender, Estate
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Remodel
Village Idiot Bot II - trashes Moneylender
Village Idiot Bot II - gains Gold
Village Idiot Bot II - plays 2 Silver, 1 Copper
Village Idiot Bot II - buys Laboratory
Village Idiot Bot II - gains Laboratory
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Remodel, Copper, Copper, Gold, Laboratory

---------- Village Idiot Bot II: turn 10 ----------
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Laboratory
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Province, Copper
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Remodel
Village Idiot Bot II - trashes Copper
Village Idiot Bot II - gains Cellar
Village Idiot Bot II - plays 2 Copper, 1 Gold
Village Idiot Bot II - buys Laboratory
Village Idiot Bot II - gains Laboratory
Village Idiot Bot II - shuffles deck
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Gold, Estate, Laboratory, Laboratory, Silver
 
---------- Village Idiot Bot II: turn 11 ----------
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Laboratory
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Province, Remodel
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Laboratory
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Village, Cellar
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Village
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Gold
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Remodel
Village Idiot Bot II - trashes Estate
Village Idiot Bot II - gains Remodel
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Cellar
Village Idiot Bot II - discards Province
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Remodel
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Remodel
Village Idiot Bot II - trashes Silver
Village Idiot Bot II - gains Laboratory
Village Idiot Bot II - plays 2 Gold
Village Idiot Bot II - buys Gold
Village Idiot Bot II - gains Gold
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Copper, Copper, Laboratory, Copper, Laboratory
 
---------- Village Idiot Bot II: turn 12 ----------
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Laboratory
Village Idiot Bot II - shuffles deck
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Silver, Laboratory
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Laboratory
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Gold, Gold
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Laboratory
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Cellar, Laboratory
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Laboratory
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Remodel, Laboratory
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Laboratory
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Remodel, Province
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Cellar
Village Idiot Bot II - discards Province
Village Idiot Bot II - discards Copper
Village Idiot Bot II - discards Copper
Village Idiot Bot II - discards Copper
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Remodel, Village, Gold
Village Idiot Bot II - shuffles deck
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Copper
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Village
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Copper
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Remodel
Village Idiot Bot II - trashes Remodel
Village Idiot Bot II - gains Gold
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Remodel
Village Idiot Bot II - trashes Copper
Village Idiot Bot II - gains Cellar
Village Idiot Bot II - plays 3 Gold, 1 Silver, 1 Copper
Village Idiot Bot II - buys Province
Village Idiot Bot II - gains Province
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Province, Copper
Village Idiot Bot II - shuffles deck
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Silver, Village, Copper
 
---------- Village Idiot Bot II: turn 13 ----------
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Village
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Laboratory
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Laboratory
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Laboratory, Laboratory
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Laboratory
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Cellar, Remodel
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Laboratory
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Gold, Cellar
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Remodel
Village Idiot Bot II - trashes Gold
Village Idiot Bot II - gains Province
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Cellar
Village Idiot Bot II - discards Cellar
Village Idiot Bot II - discards Province
Village Idiot Bot II - discards Copper
Village Idiot Bot II - discards Copper
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Gold, Remodel, Gold, Gold
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Remodel
Village Idiot Bot II - trashes Gold
Village Idiot Bot II - gains Province
Village Idiot Bot II - plays 2 Gold, 1 Silver
Village Idiot Bot II - buys Province
Village Idiot Bot II - gains Province
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Province
Village Idiot Bot II - shuffles deck
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Village, Remodel, Copper, Province

---------- Village Idiot Bot II: turn 14 ----------
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Village
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Province
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Remodel
Village Idiot Bot II - trashes Copper
Village Idiot Bot II - gains Estate
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Gold, Province, Remodel, Province, Gold
 
---------- Village Idiot Bot II: turn 15 ----------
Village Idiot Bot II - plays Remodel
Village Idiot Bot II - trashes Gold
Village Idiot Bot II - gains Province
Village Idiot Bot II - plays 1 Gold
Village Idiot Bot II - buys Estate
Village Idiot Bot II - gains Estate
Village Idiot Bot II - draws Laboratory, Silver, Cellar, Laboratory, Province

------------ Game Over ------------
Village Idiot Bot II - cards: 5 Laboratory, 2 Cellar, 2 Remodel, 1 Village, 1 Silver, 1 Gold, 1 Copper, 6 Province, 2 Estate
Village Idiot Bot II - total victory points: 38
Village Idiot Bot II - turns: 15

14
Dominion General Discussion / A game to think about
« on: December 19, 2012, 09:26:59 am »
Here's a kingdom to think about from a Goko game : Develop, Loan, Workshop, Bureaucrat, Death Cart, Feodum, Gardens, Tournament, Count, Nobles.

It's a three player game. First player buys a workshop. Second player buys a death cart. What's your strategy in third seat starting with a 4 coin hand?

15
Puzzles and Challenges / Puzzle
« on: November 07, 2012, 07:14:00 pm »
Scout has 1. Gold has 2. Caravan has 4. Tournament has 10. How many has Pirate Ship? Which Dominion card has the most?

16
Dominion Articles / Band of Misfits
« on: October 25, 2012, 08:46:02 am »
Depending upon how you look at it, this is either a very simple or a very complex card. At its simplest it can be a very straightforward card to buy and play. At its most complicated it can provide many options for card play and deck construction. I suspect though it will be simple far more often than it will be complicated.

I think the place to start looking at Band of Misfits is at the card play, which is an unusual place to start. You have the choice to play the band of misfits as any cheap card in the supply. This means that when you have two terminal actions in hand with a cheap village in the supply you can play the band of misfits as a village for the extra actions. When you have no terminal cards in your hand you can use the band of misfits as a cheap terminal in the supply, and so on. This flexibility can make deck building quite simple since you can add band of misfits to a balanced deck and it will most likely remain a balanced deck, if not better. This is only true however if there is a good selection of cheap actions cards in the kingdom: something with +coins, something with +actions, maybe something with +cards or +buy, etc. Flexibility in providing or using actions is possibly the best feature of the band of misfits.

What you gain in flexibility however you could lose in power. Being able to play a mountebank is generally better than being able to play a band of misfits as either a sea hag or navigator. Five cost cards are usually very strong and the decision to buy them ahead of a band of misfits can be simple. If there are no strong 5 cost cards in the kingdom then the band of misfits might again be simple purchase since you might otherwise have bought one of the cheaper cards instead. In the middle though there will be a small number of fiendish purchasing decisions where you are effectively weighing up a strong single card against variations from a choice of weaker cards. 

The band of misfits doesn't need any specific kingdom cards to work and will behave differently in different kingdoms. The better the variety of cheap cards in the supply however the more chance the band of misfits has to provide value. You might draw a hand that could use a chancellor, or a bureaucrat, or a thief, or a shanty town, or a remodel, or a cellar, so never rule any card out even if you wouldn't purchase it for that particular deck. Even a feast could even let you gain a duchy on the last turn. Taking that concept further, the more dependent a card is upon any specific hand the more benefit you can gain from having band of misfits in your deck instead of the card itself. Specific examples might be

- cards that rely heavily on the draw such as baron or coppersmith
- cards you might only want to play early in the game such as moneylender or trader
- cards you might only want to play for late game vp such as bishop or feast
- cards you might only want to play to redress an opponent's attack such as watchtower or lookout

I will however single out a few kingdom cards. The option to play the band of misfits as a death cart will be strong, especially when you don't want to add  two ruins to your deck by gaining a death cart. Throne room and procession are two cards that are heavily reliant on good draws but can provide more value than another 5 cost card if you can play band of misfits for their action in the right hand. Band of misfits will suit conspirator decks since it can either start or continue the conspirator chains, reducing the risks of bad draws, and you could well be willing to pay 5 or 6 coins for these engine components anyway.

The conspirator deck does highlight one risk though. Once a card's supply pile is empty the band of misfits cannot act as that card. This will affect key cards like conspirators but also some common utility cards such as villages, particularly in multi player games. It is also worth remembering that the band of misfits cannot act as silver. Sometimes a simple silver will be better in hand than a versatile action card, especially if you find yourself repeatedly playing your band of misfits as a low reward +action card.

If we return however to the card play we can see where the final complications come from. Band of Misfits increases the potential card plays from a hand, since you not only have to sequence your actions but now also choose what the actions are. Whilst this may perplex artificial intelligence I suspect that human intelligence will enjoy the challenge.

Edit - incorporated some valuable feedback into the article 26/11/12

17
Dominion Articles / Altar
« on: October 17, 2012, 09:07:51 am »
An altar does play a bit like an expand and a lot like a remodel. Trash out bad cards for good ones. If you can trash out slow cards for fast cards the altar will be played more often and can refashion your deck. Cash in at the end by trashing for vp, in this case a duchy. So how does it differ?

An altar can be put into quite a poor deck, perhaps with curses, and immediately trash out rubbish for good cards. This is different from the stepwise improvement provided by a remodel or expand. Whilst a remodel or expand can trash mid cost cards for something better, the altar should always trash out junk and should therefore avoid terminal collision.

The biggest problem for an altar comes from the high cost of 6 coins. Gaining duchies in the final turns is handy but not enough to justify buying the altar and you simply might not be able to afford the altar in the early game, so it needs to be played repeatedly in the mid game to make a difference. Thankfully 5 cost engine cards often do pay off and can drive the repeated play of key cards like an altar.  This suggests that the altar needs good action cards at cost 4/5 in the supply to drive an engine deck, and this is indeed one of the best uses for an altar. It is likely to perform worse in slow cycling treasure based decks where you are probably better served by gold.

The altar shares some of the same properties as other actions that gain cards up to a printed cost. It is improved with bridge and more notably highway. It can repeatedly gain the same card from the supply each time it is used. This allows it to create extreme decks heavily skewed towards a strategy and the altar can certainly create extreme action engines. I also wouldn't discount the altar from creating extreme green card decks or even an extreme treasure deck.

18
Dominion Articles / Procession
« on: October 12, 2012, 09:54:30 am »
This is the devil's card. You will see someone play it wonderfully and empty the provinces in 10 turns. You'll try it out the next game for yourself and it'll make a complete mess of your deck. I'll try to explain how that happens.

The Plus Side

Procession is great because you can play it your wonderful action card twice and then trash it to get an even more wonderful action card to replace it. If you can draw through your deck you might be able to play the gained card the same turn as well. You get the benefits of a throne and the benefits of an upgrade put together. Your deck can power through with action cards and
accelerate through higher cost action cards. Wonderful indeed.

The Minus Side

So why is it so bad? How about an example hand of {pearl diver, copper, copper, grand market, procession} where you'll probably play procession on the pearl diver and trash it for something like a great hall. Firstly you're not getting the double play from the grand market and you're probably wasting time with the pearl diver and great hall. Secondly, you're going to get more bad draws with the procession even than you would with a throne room since there are some actions in your deck that you don't want to process. Let's remember at this point that thrones often do draw badly, so get worried about a card that is even more reliant on the draw.

That's not the end of the problems with procession. You need a sequence of action cards in the supply at different costs to give yourself card gains. Unfortunately, you actually need a good sequence of action cards in the supply at different costs since you always want to be getting better cards from the trashing rather than just expensive cards. If the actions cards are really good though you might also find that your opponents empty a key pile and leave you with nothing useful to gain for processing the action cards already in your deck. This is going to be more of a problems with more players.

Procession can also destroy the balance of your deck if you are repeatedly trashing one card from a combination without taking a similar replacement. A village/smithy deck might be working nicely until procession turns it into a smithy/smithy deck. You can buy more villages but wouldn't you rather be buying provinces? Some of the good partners for procession are likely to be cards that can replace themselves when processed. Bridge, border village, ironworks, and fortress can do this in different ways.

I should probably also mention the cards that rely on actions being in play, such as goons, highways, and peddlers. These cards all work well (indirectly) with throne rooms but have obvious problems with procession.

Specific Uses

If we get back to the positive, we can find plenty of good situations to trash action cards. Using procession to trash ruins and shelters might be worthwhile when you consider the small bonus from the playing the action twice. You might also be able to tidy up after a swindler or trash redundant cards like a chapel, but procession could easily be the wrong card for the job unless you have controlled/assisted drawing for your deck. You still need a deck that would be suitable for a throne room.

Some actions can remove themselves anyway (island, mining village, death card) so processing them gives the card gain without a trashing penalty. Many dark ages cards can give benefits when trashed. Some action cards can provide a lot of benefit from an instant double play but provide less benefit as the game progresses, so it isn't a disaster for them to be trashed even with no replacement. A wide variety of cards might fit into this category depending upon the game played, but we could be looking at chapel, ironworks, moneylender, sea hag, mine, swindler. If you're not going to shuffle your deck again you probably don't mind which action cards you trash in the search for vp.

In Summary


If you put together the plus points and stay clear of the minus points then we roughly have

- action heavy decks with good drawing to give choice of cards to process
- good sequences of cards through cost 4-5-6-7 to give power and acceleration
- actions cards that are flexible, genuinely useful, and disposable
- tricks in gaining/trashing cards to get extra benefit or limit losses.

19
Rules Questions / Procession + Island
« on: October 08, 2012, 08:02:33 pm »
I'm again just confirming behavior for the Goko Beta. When you play a procession on an island I'm assuming that the island is set aside on the mat and is therefore not trashed by the procession. This would come under the lose track rule. However there's nothing specific to say that the procession can't trash a card that is on the island mat.

Goko currently trashes the island.

20
Rules Questions / Band of Misfits and Conspirator
« on: September 21, 2012, 08:34:06 pm »
---------- Conqueror Bot: turn 9 ----------
Conqueror Bot - plays Band of Misfits
Conqueror Bot - chooses Ironmonger
Conqueror Bot - plays Ironmonger
Conqueror Bot - draws Estate
Conqueror Bot - reveals: Mint
Conqueror Bot - places Mint on top of deck
Conqueror Bot - plays Conspirator
Conqueror Bot - draws Mint
Conqueror Bot - plays Mint
Conqueror Bot - reveals Silver
Conqueror Bot - gains Silver
Conqueror Bot - plays 1 Silver
Conqueror Bot - gains Conspirator
Conqueror Bot - shuffles deck
Conqueror Bot - draws Conspirator, Copper, Conspirator, Copper, Village

Here the Goko bot plays a band of misfits as an ironmonger, then plays a conspirator for +1 card. I'm assuming that the system is counting the band of misfits as two cards played this turn, as itself and as the ironmonger, but that this is an error since the band of misfits is played just once as the ironmonger. Can I get this rule confirmed please?

21
Dark Ages Previews / Forge trashing
« on: September 01, 2012, 07:39:32 am »
What is the specific timing of trashing with forge? The card says you can trash any number of cards from hand but do you trash them together or trash them one by one? This was irrelevant before Dark Ages but now there is the possibility that you trash a fortress, get it back into hand, trash the same fortress again, put it back into hand, and gain a province. Play king's court with your forge and you are probably quite happy.

This question is specifically asked though with the Goko beta in mind. The forge interface seems to have sadly taken a step backwards in the latest version but I can't recommend anything else without knowing this ruling exactly.

22
Simulation / Simulator crashing on Windows 7
« on: June 08, 2012, 06:30:26 pm »
I've recently got a new PC with Windows 7 and found that the Geronimoo simulator now crashes occasionally. The symptoms have intermittently been:
 - not completing a simulation, so the application & interface is still usable but cursor shows the waiting symbol.
 - freezing when running a simulation, with the interface inactive.
 - the application terminating entirely when clicking the edit button
 - once the simulator starts going wrong it continues to have problems until I restart Windows.

I'm guessing I've got a Java version problem but I have reinstalled the Java and the simulator code without improvement. I'm using the 32 bit Java version for the Chrome browser. Can anyone suggest what might be going wrong or how to fix it?

23
GokoDom / Semi-final result
« on: May 23, 2012, 02:40:15 pm »
Here are some four player games between DG, MrEevee, Fabian, and WanderingWinder. I believe that these will be made into videos by WW so I won't say too much about them. I'll say a bit more about the tiebreakers.

Game 1: http://dominion.isotropic.org/gamelog/201205/23/game-20120523-074432-7c45fc27.html
Game 2: http://dominion.isotropic.org/gamelog/201205/23/game-20120523-075721-b1a0f460.html
Game 3: http://dominion.isotropic.org/gamelog/201205/23/game-20120523-080847-37aa3f95.html
Game 4: http://dominion.isotropic.org/gamelog/201205/23/game-20120523-082518-0954458e.html
Game 5: http://dominion.isotropic.org/gamelog/201205/23/game-20120523-084154-ec950910.html

Between the four of us, we wouldn't recommend 4 player semi-finals for future competitions. It's nice to see 4 player games but with all these jesters and swindlers it was difficult for good play to overcome a good luck. I don't know the scoring, but the conclusion was that MrEevee and I needed a play off. This gave another series of 7 matches. I was feeling a bit frazzled by this stage and was putting curses on top of my deck with watchtowers, so I'm quite glad I put some decent Dominion together by the end.

MrEevee 61 : 48 DG http://dominion.isotropic.org/gamelog/201205/23/game-20120523-090050-32e364f5.html
MrEevee 29 : 39 DG http://dominion.isotropic.org/gamelog/201205/23/game-20120523-091433-58b5f5f4.html
MrEevee 18 : 38 DG http://dominion.isotropic.org/gamelog/201205/23/game-20120523-092517-efe3c76f.html
MrEevee 39 : 37 DG http://dominion.isotropic.org/gamelog/201205/23/game-20120523-093358-7d8ce830.html
MrEevee 18 : 42 DG http://dominion.isotropic.org/gamelog/201205/23/game-20120523-094744-01874fe0.html
MrEevee 36 : 45 DG http://dominion.isotropic.org/gamelog/201205/23/game-20120523-095432-b8e86ce4.html


Game 1 : I had a 5/2 split here stayed on a 5 cost card strategy that wasn't going to prosper. MrEevee built a better deck with swindlers and goons and deserved the win.
Game 2 : Funny little game this one. It needed some delicate play. I suspect I won through extra trashing from the loan, letting me accelerate into the end game with governors, but it might not have needed much different to go the other way.
Game 3 : Minions game where I got better early draws and was able to close it out easily.
Game 4 : Watchtowers and ill-gotten gains. Looks like a close game but I think MrEevee deserved it.
Game 5 : I liked the look of the engine deck components here, even without an extra buy, and the arrival of the ghost ship from the black market killed off MrEevee's silver and trader deck.
Game 6: Sea hags with a second stage of deck recovery. MrEevee had some poor draws here again and I was able ease away without many governor worries.

Thanks for games guys. I haven't played 11 games in a row for a long time.

24
Simulation / Geronimoo simulator request
« on: May 01, 2012, 07:46:11 pm »
I know Geronimoo isn't doing a lot of work updating the simulator at the moment but I'll still put forward three substantial requests. Maybe someone can help him out.

Firstly it would be good to have some "user values" that could be defined at the start of the script and calculated from existing terms in the simulator. For example you could define a user value as "Count in deck: copper" + "Count in deck: curses" and then reference that user value in the purchase conditions. This would allow the user to create far more interesting purchase conditions without great changes to way the simulator works. The user definitions could perhaps be on another tab at the top of the script.

Similarly, it would be good to have a purchase/gain condition of "When playing <card name> with <card name>". This would allow the user to take many of the most difficult decisions away from simulator logic. So as an example, if you could specify a line of Buy Gold when playing Mine with Loan then the simulator would check the buy condition to see if you were playing a mine, if you had a loan in hand, and then gain the gold by trashing the loan. Existing purchasing logic would continue otherwise.

I imagine this second request would be a heck of a lot more work to code but would let users themselves solve problems with mine, mint, remodel, upgrade, develop, expand, horns of plenty, ill gotten gains, ironworks, workshops, universities, thief, etc. The simulator wouldn't need increasingly complex AI to deal with each situation. It also fixes a variety if logic problems where you want  to gain card Y by trashing card X and you can't do the same tests before/after card X is trashed.

Thirdly it would be good after a simulation to keep a record of the final decks, something like the average number of each card type for each player. It would be even better if there were separate records for winning decks and losing decks. This would let the user find out more easily whether the kingdom cards are being bought and whether they have any impact. Maybe this data could be presented on a new display window. The simulator certainly doesn't need this feature but it might be nice to have.

25
Simulation / Simulation Tournament (Village Square)
« on: April 30, 2012, 07:08:13 am »
The challenge is to find a script that wins the most matches against other competitors only referencing three kingdom cards and basic cards. The chosen kingdom cards must come from base set Dominion, Cornucopia, or be one of the following promotional cards: Stash, Walled Village, Envoy. The bane card for the young witch is the village and all scripts may reference the village in addition to the other three kingdom cards.

- Competition is to be run on Geronimoo's simulator (currently v 1.2.0).
- 2 player games only.
- No colony. No platinum. No potion.
- Tournament prizes can be referenced freely.

You can set the starting hand in the simulator by clicking the start state tab and, for example, adding a line for the start state of "Copper, Copper, Copper, Copper, Estate" and the starting draw deck as "Copper, Copper, Copper, Estate, Estate". If you are using this feature then tick shuffle draw deck and make sure you do start with the required 7 copper and 3 estates. Any script without this feature will have a random starting hand.

Please send entries to DG through the Dominion Strategy Forum mail. Closing date for entries May 15th. Each person is allowed only one entry to this competition. Please title your scripts using your forum name and kingdom cards.

The entries will be run in a league against each other. In each league game two points will be awarded to the script with the higher win rate, or 1 point each if the win rates differ by less than 1%. The overall winner will be the script with the most points. The tiebreaker will be highest aggregate win rate in the league. I will also declare a best newcomer as someone who didn't submit an entry to my pairs tournament. The prizes are ... nothing. It's all for fun.

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